The question of “who handles your business when you are away?” was discussed in one of my business development groups last Wednesday. It was posed to those who may be sole practitioners to see who had a contingency plan for taking care of their customers needs while they were away. Perhaps you are one of those folks who simply doesn’t take time off because you feel you can’t. Well this might be an opportunity to change that or to make sure that you are not losing customers when you do go away.
A funny thing happened yesterday. I experienced this with a company I do business with. I stopped by and no one was there, so I called and got a message saying no one would be there until next week. That’s not what you want to hear and as much as you want to be nice and maintain loyalty, sometimes it’s just not a reality.
A simple solution is to develop a relationship with someone you trust. Many businesses do this and it works well for them, but it certainly requires working with someone you can trust to not steal your business. Of course, your good customers should alert you to this if someone would try to steal them away, but as my old boss used to say “if you can steal my customers from me do it because it means I am not serving them well enough for them to want to stay with me.”
No matter what industry you are in, it’s important to have a backup plan. Whether you are a local electrician or a web designer, your customers want to know they can reach someone that they can trust when they need professional assistance.
If you don’t have someone you can use as a backup, start your research today. It’s better to have one before you need one.
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